Nature Adventure #1: Toll Collectors and Selfies

It’s easy to get stuck inside the Stanford “bubble.” It is, after all, its own city, and technically, one can survive without ever setting foot outside of campus. But really, what kind of a life is that? Especially when everyone around you has a car! I am so fortunate to have many people around me with vehicles that can get me the hell out of here from time to time. So this past Saturday, we decided to go hiking! Out! In nature! Somewhere, other than The Dish. Which means, I went on an adventure in nature and I get to cross something off my list! Yay!


  1. Go on nature adventures.


So at 9:15am on a Saturday morning (we are in college, what is this madness?!) Lily, our friend Kelley, and I found ourselves in Lily’s fun and sporty car on our way to Huddart Park in Woodside. But first, of course we had to stop by BARE Bowls for a quick and healthy breakfast. This time, I decided to try Lily’s favorite flavor called Cardinal which was a lot lighter than Trailblazer, probably because it didn’t have almond butter in it.


After breakfast, we made our way to Woodside and, though only 30 minutes away from campus, it provided us with the mini escape we needed. It was nice to get away and do something other than explore the exciting neighborhood *slight sarcasm* of Palo Alto. Once there, the first thing we realized was how extremely active the people of Woodside seemed. There were as many bikes as cars on the road, and probably even more runners than pedestrians. We even saw horses on our way up the mountain.


The second thing we realized was that Huddart Park had an entrance fee of $6 that could only be paid in cash, which neither Kelley nor I had. So it was all up to Lily who, with the last four dollar bills in her wallet, a charming smile, and a few sticky glances at the toll collector, managed to get us into the park. (Smart thinking, Lily, keep eating those acai bowls!)


Our goal was to go on a short 1-1.5 hour scenic hike. Because the park had many different trails that were either too short or too long, we decided to go on a customized route, as suggested by the same, lovely, toll collector. And we listened, and we got lost, but we listened, and it was gorgeous!

So tall.
So tall.

We walked around among tall redwoods which shaded us from the sun. That was very different to me, since I was used to the dry Los Angeles hiking trails that I would have to mentally and physically prepare for by wearing a hat and putting on sunscreen. This time, the trees provided us with shade and we were surprised by how sunny it actually was once we finished our hike an hour later. Along the trail I saw this flower and I thought I was a photographer.



Towards the end, there were a few bridges to cross that got us close to a very small, almost non-existent creek, and on a bridge we took a dramatic selfie with the sunlight shining in the corner.

Lily, Kelley, and me (why am I so happy?)
Lily, Kelley, and me (why am I so happy?)

Overall, it was a peaceful and relaxing (albeit early) start to our Saturday and by half past noon, we found ourselves back in the “bubble” as if we’d never left, watching the rest of the campus wake up.


One thought on “Nature Adventure #1: Toll Collectors and Selfies

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